News » Archives » 2015

Paris Outcome: Adapt or Bust

As the Paris climate negotiations closed last Saturday, you heard a great deal of hope and optimism as well as congratulations for vision and progress emanating from COP21. Indeed, important commitments have been made – but they’re pledges, not actions, and they don’t reverse the adverse climate change underway. Which is why...

Understanding the 'wicked problem' of climate change

Frank Incropera acknowledges that it’s somewhat unusual for an engineer to delve deeply into the topic of climate change. Scientists, not engineers, have played the most prominent roles in the climate change debate to date. However, Incropera believes solving the problem going forward will require a joint effort from the...

COP21: Significant Outcomes or Business as Usual?

It is human to be hopeful. Yet, in 20 years of meetings to avert the consequences of global warming and climate change, the United Nation’s Conference of Parties (COP) has failed to meet the challenge. Greenhouse gas emissions and the Earth’s average surface temperature have continued to rise, while the...

Cheer, cheer for clean water

The University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish: gold helmets crackling under a roar of the Victory March, embraced under Jesus’ outstretched arms.  Try again. 

Paris climate talks: What comes next?

The more than 190 countries that have gathered in France for worldwide climate talks did much of their work in advance. Before the summit, at least 181 nations had already announced their plans to lower their carbon emissions in order to help slow the pace of global warming.

ND @ COP XXI

As the historic 21st Conference of Parties gets underway in Paris, members of the Notre Dame community are finding a variety of ways to stay informed and engage in the climate negotiations.

These Countries Have The Most To Lose If Paris Climate Talks Fail

Warming-fueled droughts and storms imperil populations, industries and even the existence of some countries. Climate change may be the one thing that threatens everyone on Earth. But the peril is much more dire for people in some countries if negotiators fail to reach a climate deal in Paris in the...

Author: Alex Gumm

Algal blooms a 20-year problem for Lake Erie

If you don't live on the West Coast, you don't understand what it's like to not have access to water in the United States, right? One year ago, a half million Toledo residents experienced their own kind of water shortage – one that left 400,000 people with no clean drinking water from their...

Replacing culverts with bridges could help fish passage

Replacing culverts with bridges may benefit fish because of improved connectivity of streams in a watershed, a pilot project in the Huron-Manistee National Forests shows. But doing so also creates risks of more pathways for invasive species to spread and of fine sediments that can smother fish spawning beds, a study by U.S. Forest...

Conflict makes countries more vulnerable to climate change - index

BARCELONA, Nov 17 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Syria, Libya and Yemen are among the countries whose ability to withstand climate change shocks and stresses has deteriorated most in the past five years, suggesting conflict makes people more vulnerable to climate impacts, researchers said. The University of Notre Dame Global Adaptation...

Taking attendance with eDNA

Ecologists study the mix of organisms that live together in a habitat. Sometimes they’ll focus on one member of this ecosystem. But “there are many cases where you’d like to look at a whole community [of organisms],” says Michael Pfrender. He’s a geneticist at the University of Notre Dame in...

ND-LEEF pavilion receives award from Indiana AIA

The Morrison Family Education and Outreach Pavilion, the inaugural building at the University of Notre Dame’s Linked Experimental Ecosystem Facility (ND-LEEF) at St. Patrick’s County Park, received a 2015 Citation Award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Indiana. Constructed in October 2014, the pavilion is the first University structure to receive...

Author: Alex Gumm

Speedy Evolution Affects More Than One Species

The concept that biodiversity feeds upon itself is not uncommon in the world of evolution. The problem is a lack of hard data that shows this process to be naturally occurring.  However, recent research by a team of scientists, including a Michigan State University entomologist, finds that recent evolutionary changes...

Will the Snowpack Be Back?

A back-country skier skins up a slope in the North Cascades. Photos by Rylan Schoen It was mid-January 2015. And Carson Guy, an enthusiastic Alpine skier who’s usually on the slopes between 50 and 100 days each year, was headed to Alpental. OK, so it looked like rain at the...

ND-LEEF Science Sunday event to take place Sept. 20

The Notre Dame Linked Experimental Ecosystem Facility (ND-LEEF), a unique environmental research collaboration between the University of Notre Dame and St. Patrick’s County Park, will host its third annual public Science Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday (Sept. 20).

Faith and science can find common ground

Faith and science can find common ground
In recent weeks, we have learned that Pope Francis enticed Cuban President Raúl Castro to consider a return to Catholicism, and has ended a dispute involving US nuns that will allow them to return to serving the poor free from the suspicion of heresy.   Perhaps most surprisingly, at least...

Faith and science can find common ground

In recent weeks, we have learned that Pope Francis enticed Cuban President Raúl Castro to consider a return to Catholicism, and has ended a dispute involving US nuns that will allow them to return to serving the poor free from the suspicion of heresy.   Perhaps most surprisingly, at least...

Four College of Engineering faculty awarded $1.8M in DURIP grants

Four faculty members from the College of Engineering at the University of Notre Dame have received Defense University Research Instrumention Program (DURIP) grants from the Department of Defense for 2015, totaling more than $1.8 million. These highly competitive awards will enable the purchase of new state-of-the-art equipment in support of...

Jessica Hellmann named Director of University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment

Jessica Hellmann named Director of University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment
Jessica Hellmann, associate professor and associate department chair of Biological Sciences at the University of Notre Dame, has been named the new director of the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment.    As director, Hellmann will work to solve grand environmental challenges, while advancing interdisciplinary research, teaching and engaging...